The story looks at a world where a woman, Jasira, of an oppressed people, is allowed to live among the privileged. She has chosen to work with the resistance movement, "The Brotherhood of the Fringe" to try to help free her people, but this may have been the costliest mistake The Brotherhood and she has ever made.
Issue one focuses on Jasira waking up in the middle of the process of being "converted". She is suffering from memory loss, the shock of finding that she has energy cannons mounted in her arms and is much stronger. As Jasira tries to escape she has to fight her way past soldiers and another pair of converted agents.
Issue two takes place 6 months prior to the events in issue one and gives a glimpse of Jasira's life before Project Convert. Why she was selected and what was her role for The Brotherhood? Also the members and the hierarchy of The Brotherhood are introduced.
Science fiction has always been a great way to explore social concepts. Television shows like "The Twilight Zone" and "Outer Limits" told these kinds stories with fantastic creatures or aliens to be allowed to look at issues like race and prejudice. N Steven does a great job in this action pack story about a large corporation in a country where a foreign power has taken control for the past three decades. He highlights what the people are willing to do to fight for their freedom as well as showing the point of view the privileged class. The choices of who are the converted is also something that I think is a very interesting and well thought out decision.
Harris is touching on many issues like corporate power, a controlled media, spying/surveillance, race relation, privilege and women's rights. These concepts are seen through out the two issues. Even though this country was conquered by a foreign power we see the all its influence and control displayed through the nameless corporate power that seem to control all aspects of the occupied people's lives. Jasira is reprimanded for asking the wrong questions. Even though she is putting her life in danger and jeopardizing her being noticed by the corporate power, she is a principled enough journalist to asked the tough questions to try to inform the public. She is being surveilled and is not trusted by the corporate controlled state. Harris also shows the racial dynamic and privilege based on the reception Jasria gets from her fellow reporters. Also the fact that all the subjects of Project "Convert" we see in the books are female is a very powerful statement. Its interesting to see that women are being transformed into these powerful weapons, but in Jasira's case we know it was against her will. Its chilling to think that the corporation also has the right over a woman's body to do with what they see fit. These converted are treated with disrespect by the mostly male scientist who turned them into these living weapons.
N Steven has been working on this title for years and the co-scripting by Robert Garrett keeps the dialogue concise and clean. The artwork is the star of the books and the dialogue is a dutiful supporting co-star. There is a lot of ideas and concepts brought about with the combination of the two which would have to be tackled differently in say a novel. The story seems to be very current and resonates with a lot of issues we are facing today. This is the best kind of entertainment, powerful, draws you in and is thought provoking at the same time. This stunning project not only displays Mr. Harris' artistic talent but his amazing ability of storytelling and crafting something truly unique. I definitely recommend you pick up a copy. You can purchase the books in the following link to a post from the BCGL(Black Comix Guide & Listing).